Every morning, we compile the links of the day and dump them here… highlighting the big storyline. Because there’s nothing quite as satisfying as a good morning dump.
“We’re not sustaining defensive effort for four quarters, getting outworked,” Pierce said. “It’s pretty much every night. Right now we have no identity. I mean, that’s just simple and plain. We’re supposed to be a defensive team, (but) we give up a hundred points every night. We’re still searching trying to find out who we want to be for this season.”
At this point, Celtics fans may anoint Avery Bradley as the next pope if he is able to come in and turn this thing around. To put it bluntly, the Celtics defense has been abysmal this season for much of the year. The Roseless Chicago Bulls flat out shredded the Celtics last night with Joakim Noah putting up a career game against the Celtics pathetic interior defense.
Doc Rivers “rolled his eyes” when asked about the Celtics response to his request for defensive intensity. Coming off a night where they scored just 71 points against the Grizzlies, the Bulls put up 100 against a team that is supposed to be built around its defense. This falls on Kevin Garnett, Brandon Bass, Jared Sullinger and Jeff Green. The three guys who have been put in the paint at times to be an interior defender; instead of playing hard nosed defense they are playing ‘O-Lay Defense. Wasn’t Jeff Green a former all Big-East Defensive Player of the Year? Aren’t Bass and Sullinger big bodies that should be able to bang it in the paint?
That has to be the most frustrating part of this issue is that the Celtics HAVE the talent to be a very good defense, but their players seem unwilling to do what it takes to make this happen. If you are completely foreign to the game of Basketball and see Brandon Bass for the first time, based on his build what would your expectation be in terms of what his game is? Would he be the soft outside touch shooter or the Glen Davis mold who hangs in the paint and fights for rebounds using his body size to his advantage despite his lack of height? How about Jeff Green? A long and lanky 6’9” 3/4 blend with a terrific wingspan, one would imagine that he can grab defensive boards at a fairly good click right?
Unlike offensive skills, rebounding and defense are not as much about physical gifts or talent as much as they are about the want and desire to succeed at that given skillset. Look at Reggie Evans, he is one of the smaller forwards on the floor yet widely accepted as one of the best rebounders in the game…why? Because he will outwork anyone for that rebound. Sure the speed, leaping ability, and court vision help a bit with these but in the end the person that wants it more is going to succeed between the defender and offensive player, as well as going up for the board. I am the last person to say I was a Kendrick Perkins fan, but to give him any bit of credit that is at least one thing the Celtics could rely on night in and night out; that he would give them 100% effort to defend the paint and grab the boards. Put quite simply, the Celtics don’t have players in their front court with the exception of Kevin Garnett, that have enough heart to want it more than you, and THAT is an issue.
The rest of the links
Rivers on Rondo: ‘He’s trying to do too much’- CSNNE , Doc’s Take : ‘Not a good team right now’ – ESPN Boston , Slumping Boston Celtics may be in need of a shake up – ESPN Boston , Celtics defense has gone missing during identity crisis- CSNNE Rondo: ‘We don’t have any quitters’-CSNNE NESN: Avery Bradley’s return will not solve Celtics defensive issues without other fixes